Political Economy of Natural Disasters
This thesis explores in five empirical papers the political economy of natural disasters using the case study of Iran. Within these five chapters, the social and economic consequences of natural disasters are evaluated on different levels, namely province level, county level, and individual level. I...
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|Summary:||This thesis explores in five empirical papers the political economy of natural disasters using the case study of Iran. Within these five chapters, the social and economic consequences of natural disasters are evaluated on different levels, namely province level, county level, and individual level. In the first paper (Chapter 2), I study the relationship between natural disasters and economic growth, using a spatial Durbin panel model and covering the period from 2010 to 2016 and including 29 Iranian provinces. The results of the empirical investigation suggest that there is a statistically significant positive relationship between the spatially lagged occurrence of natural disasters and the change of the first difference of the natural logarithm of GDP per capita. This confirms the existence of spatial spillover effects of natural disasters to neighboring provinces.
The second paper (Chapter 3) examines the impact of the 2003 Bam earthquake in the Iranian Kerman Province, using the synthetic control method (SCM) and nighttime light (NTL) data from 1992 to 2020 for 31 provinces and 429 counties. According to the results, Kerman Province, Bam County, and the neighboring counties experienced a boost in economic activity in the years following the earthquake, which can be explained by the type and severity of the event, the underlying composition of the economy, the total area impacted, and the international media attention. With the same methodology, the third paper (Chapter 4) studies the impact of the 2001 flood in Golestan Province and found a drop of economic activity in the years following the flood disaster.
In the fourth paper (Chapter 5), we have investigated the state of disaster literacy in Tehran City, based on a survey with 502 participants which was conducted in 2020/2021. The results of the empirical investigation using logistic regressions suggest that the household’s income level, the trust in Iran’s natural disaster management, the fear of natural disasters, the perceived frequency of natural disasters, and internet usage show positive associations with the disaster literacy items. Additionally, we reveal a spatial inequality within Tehran City, where the Northern subsample has significantly higher scores of the self-developed disaster literacy index (DLI) than the Southern subsample.
Finally, the fifth paper (Chapter 6) studies the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the family development in Iran with a representative survey of 1214 participants which was conducted in 2022. The results of the empirical investigation using logistic regressions suggest that the concern about the continuation of the pandemic and the respondents’ vaccination status show negative associations with childbirth during the pandemic, and the experiences of life loss and job loss are positively associated with a decrease of the respondents’ child desires. In contrast, spending more time with the family is positively associated with an increase of the respondents’ child desires. The experience of unemployment due to the pandemic is positively associated with marriage during the pandemic. Additionally, we found heterogenous effects depending on the respondents’ gender, location, and social class. Overall, the results show how the COVID-19 pandemic affected marriage and fertility dynamics, and thus demographic development, in Iran.|
|Physical Description:||224 Pages|